DANTE FENOLIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DANTE FENOLIO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pyrosomes are free-floating colonial tunicates in which all individual zooids are clones. Pyrosomes are typically cigar shaped but this can vary between species. Each little oblong structure seen in them is the stomach of a clone. Pyrosomes are filter feeders and remove from ocean water small organisms and marine snow as food. Many pyrosomes are bioluminescent and flash brightly when disturbed. If a flashlight is flashed onto a pyrosome in the dark, they sometimes flash back. This individual was trawled up in the Gulf of Mexico, 2015.
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